Industrial parks were a topic of discussion Monday during a meeting of the Leavenworth County Commission.

Industrial parks were a topic of discussion Monday during a meeting of the Leavenworth County Commission.

Commissioners discussed a proposed contract for the development of the Tonganoxie Business Park. And they were presented a draft of a request for proposals for the development of a new business and technology park in Leavenworth.

The city of Leavenworth will issue the RFP. But city officials agreed to present the RFP to the county government for review before it is issued.

The County Commission has agreed to provide $4.8 million in funding for the development of the new industrial park in Leavenworth. The city of Leavenworth will be responsible for additional costs.

Commissioners took no action on the RFP during Monday’s meeting. Financial Administrator Mark Loughry said representatives of the Leavenworth County Public Works Department had not yet reviewed the document.

He suggested moving the issue to the agenda of a County Commission meeting planned for Thursday.

The county and city governments initially entered into an interlocal agreement with the Leavenworth County Port Authority for the development of a new business and technology park on Eisenhower Road. And a groundbreaking for the planned industrial park took place in December.

But the interlocal agreement required approval from the Kansas Attorney General’s Office. And the county withdrew support for the agreement after concerns were raised by the Attorney General’s Office. At the time, there was said to be questions about the construction work for the project not being put out for bids.

The county and city governments recently have entered into a new contract for the development of the industrial park. The new contract, which does not involve the Port Authority, is not subject to approval from the Attorney General’s Office.

The commission and officials with the city of Tonganoxie are seeking to enter into a similar contract for the development of the Tonganoxie Business Park.

The commission also previously entered into an interlocal agreement with Tonganoxie and the Port Authority for the development of this industrial park. But this agreement was rejected by the Attorney General’s Office.

The Attorney General’s Office reportedly cited concerns about plans to provide money from general obligation bonds to the Port Authority and transfer land to a private owner before the improvements were made.

A proposed contract between Tonganoxie and the county was reviewed during Monday’s meeting.

“It mirrors the agreement you recently entered into with the city of Leavenworth,” said David Van Parys, an attorney who is assisting the county with the industrial park projects.

Loughry said commissioners were not being asked to approve the contract Monday, but he wanted everyone to understand what is being proposed.

Under the proposed contract, the county will provide up to $5 million in funding for the Tonganoxie Business Park project. The city of Tonganoxie will be responsible for all remaining costs.

Loughry said some of the language in the draft of the contract may be applicable to the Leavenworth project but not the Tonganoxie Business Park. He said officials with the city of Tonganoxie may want to make changes.

Tonganoxie City Manager George Brajkovic attended Monday’s meeting. He said the Tonganoxie City Council would be meeting later that day.

The proposed contract was not on the agenda of the City Council meeting, but Brajkovic said he would provide an update to the council members.

Brajkovic said the City Council can later call a special meeting, if needed, to approve the contract.

Commissioner Clyde Graeber said he wants to see the agreement move forward.

“I don’t want to see any more roadblocks,” he said.

Commission Chairman Doug Smith asked about a provision in the proposed contract that requires the Tonganoxie to submit a site plan for the project within 90 days. He questioned the need for 90 days.

“It’s out there already,” he said of a site plan. “I think most of us have seen it.”

Van Parys said the city can submit the site plan as soon as possible, but the contract will allow up to 90 days to complete the task.

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